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Bass Innovations...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by stonedmotus, Apr 24, 2010.

  1. stonedmotus


    Dec 10, 2009
    ...over the past 50 years. what are some of the big ones?

    i go with the first Steinberger.
  2. Dan B

    Dan B

    Oct 19, 2008
    Pittsfield, MA
    The split P pickup, I guess.
    And the dual J.
    And the MM type pickup.

    I guess you could say fanned frets also.

    Steinbergers are the most glaring innovations though. Man I want to try one.
  3. lowrez

    lowrez no.

    Nov 27, 2004
    New Englandish
    If you ever travel north, that can be arranged.
  4. Dan B

    Dan B

    Oct 19, 2008
    Pittsfield, MA
    How far north? I'm already in MA.

    As far as the OP goes, how about ERBs?
  5. Davyo

    Davyo Davyo Supporting Member

    Nov 26, 2008
    Las Vegas, Nv
    I would argree that the Steinberger was a biggie !!!

    But one of thee, if not the biggest innovations was the introduction of the 5 string bass, up until then all bass's had only had 4 strings,, then the 5 string led to the 6, 7 and more stringed bass's.

  6. lowrez

    lowrez no.

    Nov 27, 2004
    New Englandish
    Southern Maine.
  7. Coop Soup

    Coop Soup

    Aug 24, 2005
    Active electronics would have to be up there.
  8. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    the more innovations i see, the more i just want to play a precision ;)
  9. The 5th string. And every string after that.

    Magnetic pickups (I don't think the different types are all that innovative, since most are just rearragnements and new ways to wire them. The concept, however, is revolutionary).

    Frets, easily.

    I also think that the Bass VI and all it's knockoffs are pretty innovative, what with their identity crisis' and whatnot.
  10. Bass-Adrenaline


    Jan 23, 2010
    Using materials aside from wood, lightwave pickups, etc.

    Im sure i can think of more.
  11. bassbenj


    Aug 11, 2009
    Actually, Boomie, that just means you are getting OLD! :bag:

    Reminds me of gui****s with T shirts that say: "If you think the music is too loud, then you are too old!"

    I guess I need one that says: If you think this bass has too many strings, then you are too old!"
  12. stonedmotus


    Dec 10, 2009
  13. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
    Ned Steinberger's design of the Spector was innovative IMO.
  14. ginospice


    Dec 29, 2007
    I'm going to have to say-the steinberger 5 fretless. Its got all the important "upgrades" to solidify the bass. Its durrable, preamped, light and still sounds like a bass. You combine that with a tiny digital power amp and we have reached that point of over engineered coolness. Still-at 6 foot tall, I'd look like a dork playing one.
  15. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass **** Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    ...not having midi installed on a bass, but the invention propelled electronic music into the mainstream as a tool for writing and production which helped to drive the need for lower range and brought that vocabulary back into popular music again.

    I suppose Steinberger gets the credit here, but just the use of composite stiffening rods in "conventional" basses is an important innovation, you just don't see as many "ski-jump" bowed necks anymore.

    Fanned Frets..
    Makes a lot of sense, I love them.

    Consistent parts help make consistent basses, helps to decrease cost and increase quality.
  16. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    aren't we about the same age, bongo? ;)

    you know, the kids love the precision these days. i'm seeing a lot more precisions these days than at any point since the 70's. but if it makes you feel better, i still have a 5 and i was actually practicing with it last week. you won't see me onstage with it anymore unless i have a gun to my head (or if someone ever requests it again, which they really don't ;) ), but i love to practice on it.

    btw, here is the drummer equivalent of a 6-string bass:


    HAHAHAHA!!! just kidding, you 6-string playing babies!

    sort of.
  17. nic salsus

    nic salsus

    Mar 16, 2010
    C'mon, a fanned fret, single cut, graphite neck, headless 6 string with LED fret markers....don't lie, you f***in' know you want it. :eyebrow:
  18. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    wouldn't mind the led's ;)
  19. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    Leaving aside all musical innovations, here are a few bass innovations from the last 40 or so years in no particular order: active electronics, 35" scale, 5ers, chambered alder, fretless 5 and 6 string basses, advanced materials (composites) and finishes, relics, reissues, coffee tables/hippie sandwiches, boutiques, parts basses, a bounty of after-market pickups etc., huge variety of strings, just to name a few. Production methods can now be very precise and heavily automated--we even now have PLEK. :eek:

    However, the basic form, like that of the electric guitar, is based on human factors (ergonomics, fashion, costs), and the physics and psychoacoustics of the vibrating string. This form is always being reinterpreted within a narrow range of variation. :D
  20. Korladis

    Korladis Banned Supporting Member


    No seriously.

    Maybe active electronics, but they're not an innovation I really appreciate, so...

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